Trouble With Mouthpiece Pressure and air problem

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Crusadead, Oct 31, 2007.

  1. Crusadead

    Crusadead New Friend

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    Oct 31, 2007
    Canada
    Hey guys, I've been playing trumpet for 4 years, and have been taking lessons from a professional big band trumpet player for 1 year. Ever since I have started playing trumpet, I can never seem to not get a red ring around my lips. I've asked my teacher about this, and she said to use less pressure. As simple as it sounds, I cannot get a full sound I usually get without using a little bit of pressure, and with a little bit of pressure I still get a red ring. I'm so worried about this red ring because my trumpet teacher told me that I wouldn't be able to play very long in one session with it, and I wouldn't allow my embrochure to grow very well. The other day I played for two hours straight with a red ring, and I still could play well, but I lost 3-4 notes in my range. Does this mean my red ring is normal or should I use some sort of technique not to get the red ring? Also, my teacher makes me do the Chicowicz flow exercises. I can make it up to the high G, but after that, I can't seem to go higher. Using faster air is essential my teacher says, and to do this I have to move my tongue up by saying E. But while doing the chicowicz exercises, it feels like my tongue is as heavy as a hunk of gold, so I can't move it up. What should I do about this?
     
  2. Miyot

    Miyot Pianissimo User

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    Jul 22, 2007
    I'm not sure what you mean by a red ring. I always have a little mpc impression after a session. I try to use minimal pressure, but even a short practice leaves a mpc impression ring on my chops. I've seen pictures of many professional trumpet players with mpc rings. Mine fade after a while. I think it is nothing to worry over. At least I don't. After 2 straight hrs of playing I lose some range as well. I mean who wouldn't. About the tongue, don't ask me. I know mine gets tired after a lot of work, but I can always move it. Mine gets a little slugish with a lot of work. But I mean whose wouldn't. If my tongue gets tired I take a break. If this is wrong, I'm sure someone else will jump in to help.
     
  3. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

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    My teacher told me that our lips and the muscles we use to work them just weren't designed to play the trumpet, and said I needed to avoid long sessions which could actually cause damage to my embouchure. 2 hours is a lot; most symphony performances are at least 1/2 hour shorter than that.
    If you have 2 hour rehearsals your conductor/leader is pushing it. If you have enough players you could do a bit of rotation so each gets some rest. As Miyot says, some loss of range normally happens as we get tired.
     
  4. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    As we can't see your face, it is hard to determine if what you experience is destructive or not. A red ring is only evidence of irritation and that is normal with MANY players (and cannot be prevented). If you can play well after 2 hours, your chops are probably pretty together. I wouldn't worrk about it! Your tongue has to be trained just like your chops. Keep working and the gols will turn into titanium and if you keep going, become as light as air.

    Check this thread out - solar bell is about as good as it gets!
    http://www.trumpetmaster.com/vb/f131/mouthpiece-ring-too-much-pressure-30505.html
     
  5. Patric_Bernard

    Patric_Bernard Forte User

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    Oct 25, 2007
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    I'm sorry, but that is not that much. Marching Drum Corps We easily played 6 hours strait most times... its not that much doing two.

    as for the lip ring, theres nothing wrong with a red colored lip ring after your done playing. There is a problem however with an indention in your lips. That shows that your using way to much pressure to try and force out those higher notes.
     
  6. Miyot

    Miyot Pianissimo User

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    Jul 22, 2007
    Patric Bernard, I have to disagree. I get a slight indention in my lips when I play. If I do a light session, and just enough pressure to keep the seal from leaking, I get an indention or light ring. I have used excessive pressure in the past and know it is destructive. But at least for me, just enough pressure to make a seal will cause a slight impression.

    As for practice time, you may be tough as nails. 6 hrs. would destroy me.
     
  7. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    6 hours of playing is not 6 hours of music. 6 hours of marching band is not 6 hours of playing.

    6 hours of ANYTHING non-stop is simply non-productive. Your concentration will dramatically suffer after 2 hours regardless of who or what you are! Playing 6 hours of marching band "easily" is pure BS. 6 hours of "serious" playing is hard work regardless of where! Running around a field with a horn stuck to your face is even more physical strain. Patric, please get serious.

    Yes, I know trumpet players that can play 6 hours+ per day. I do not consider them more advanced than other players that have a well thought out 3 hour program.

    All of us get opportunities where we have to produce more than we have practiced. For those situations, we need to use more brain than muscle tissue......................

    An indentation is as individual as the player. Some have it to a greater extent than others even if they are not mashing the axe into their faces!
     
  8. et_mike

    et_mike Mezzo Forte User

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    I had a friend in high school that was allergic to the metal alloy in his mouthpiece. When he played for extended periods of time the buzzing on the metal would cause irritation that almost looked like a rash in the shape of a ring on his mouth. I know it was an allergic reaction because his doctor told him so. He switched to a gold plated mouthpiece and never had the problem again. I doubt that is what you are experiencing, but I thought I would tell you anyway! Good luck.
     
  9. tonidimitri

    tonidimitri New Friend

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    6 hours playing is not considered tooo much.
    maurice andre stated in a interview once that he practised 5-6 hours daily and usually about 1 - 1 1/2 on concert days. rafael mendez practised 10-13 hours everyday he was at home. pierre thibaud practised 8 hours among teaching and performing and Hakan hardenberger in a materclass said whilst studying in paris his practise would consist of 5-7 hours everday religously.
    so its personally in my opionion, but my thoughts are it would be wiser to practise in perhaps 1 hour sessions
     
  10. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

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    You are describing the habits of exceptional performers with very well developed chops and tongues. I don't know how Mendez could play that much, and still find time to eat, sleep, and go to the bathroom (maybe he played on the toilet!). For the rest of us mortals it is wise to do everything in moderation. 6 hours divided into 3 or 4 sessions is possible, but still one needs to make a living and most of us don't do that on the trumpet.
    It isn't how much you practice, but how.
     

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